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Written by: Michael Drayton | Biography
 | Quotes (7) |
 NEAR to the silver Trent 
 SIRENA dwelleth; 
She to whom Nature lent 
 All that excelleth; 
By which the Muses late 
 And the neat Graces 
Have for their greater state 
 Taken their places; 
Twisting an anadem 
 Wherewith to crown her, 
As it belong'd to them 
 Most to renown her. 
 On thy bank, 
 In a rank, 
 Let thy swans sing her, 
 And with their music 
 Along let them bring her. 

Tagus and Pactolus 
 Are to thee debtor, 
Nor for their gold to us 
 Are they the better: 
Henceforth of all the rest 
 Be thou the River 
Which, as the daintiest, 
 Puts them down ever. 
For as my precious one 
 O'er thee doth travel, 
She to pearl paragon 
 Turneth thy gravel. 
 On thy bank... 

Our mournful Philomel, 
 That rarest tuner, 
Henceforth in Aperil 
 Shall wake the sooner, 
And to her shall complain 
 From the thick cover, 
Redoubling every strain 
 Over and over: 
For when my Love too long 
 Her chamber keepeth, 
As though it suffer'd wrong, 
 The Morning weepeth. 
 On thy bank... 

Oft have I seen the Sun, 
 To do her honour, 
Fix himself at his noon 
 To look upon her; 
And hath gilt every grove, 
 Every hill near her, 
With his flames from above 
 Striving to cheer her: 
And when she from his sight 
 Hath herself turned, 
He, as it had been night, 
 In clouds hath mourned. 
 On thy bank... 

The verdant meads are seen, 
 When she doth view them, 
In fresh and gallant green 
 Straight to renew them; 
And every little grass 
 Broad itself spreadeth, 
Proud that this bonny lass 
 Upon it treadeth: 
Nor flower is so sweet 
 In this large cincture, 
But it upon her feet 
 Leaveth some tincture. 
 On thy bank... 

The fishes in the flood, 
 When she doth angle, 
For the hook strive a-good 
 Them to entangle; 
And leaping on the land, 
 From the clear water, 
Their scales upon the sand 
 Lavishly scatter; 
Therewith to pave the mould 
 Whereon she passes, 
So herself to behold 
 As in her glasses. 
 On thy bank... 

When she looks out by night, 
 The stars stand gazing, 
Like comets to our sight 
 Fearfully blazing; 
As wond'ring at her eyes 
 With their much brightness, 
Which so amaze the skies, 
 Dimming their lightness. 
The raging tempests are calm 
 When she speaketh, 
Such most delightsome balm 
 From her lips breaketh. 
 On thy bank... 

In all our Brittany 
 There 's not a fairer, 
Nor can you fit any 
 Should you compare her. 
Angels her eyelids keep, 
 All hearts surprising; 
Which look whilst she doth sleep 
 Like the sun's rising: 
She alone of her kind 
 Knoweth true measure, 
And her unmatched mind 
 Is heaven's treasure. 
 On thy bank... 

Fair Dove and Darwen clear, 
 Boast ye your beauties, 
To Trent your mistress here 
 Yet pay your duties: 
My Love was higher born 
 Tow'rds the full fountains, 
Yet she doth moorland scorn 
 And the Peak mountains; 
Nor would she none should dream 
 Where she abideth, 
Humble as is the stream 
 Which by her slideth. 
 On thy bank... 

Yet my pour rustic Muse 
 Nothing can move her, 
Nor the means I can use, 
 Though her true lover: 
Many a long winter's night 
 Have I waked for her, 
Yet this my piteous plight 
 Nothing can stir her. 
All thy sands, silver Trent, 
 Down to the Humber, 
The sighs that I have spent 
 Never can number. 
 On thy bank, 
 In a rank, 
 Let thy swans sing her, 
 And with their music 
 Along let them bring her.